Affiliation: University College London
Foundations of Fully Dynamic Group Signatures
Group signatures allow members of a group to anonymously sign on behalf of the group. Membership is administered by a designated group manager. The group manager can also reveal the identity of a signer if and when needed to enforce accountability and deter abuse. For group signatures to be applicable in practice, they need to support fully dynamic groups, i.e., users may join and leave at any time. Existing security definitions for fully dynamic group signatures are informal, have shortcomings, and are mutually incompatible. We fill the gap by providing a formal rigorous security model for fully dynamic group signatures. Our model is general and is not tailored toward a specific design paradigm and can therefore, as we show, be used to argue about the security of different existing constructions following different design paradigms. Our definitions are stringent and when possible incorporate protection against maliciously chosen keys. We consider both the case where the group management and tracing signatures are administered by the same authority, i.e., a single group manager, and also the case where those roles are administered by two separate authorities, i.e., a group manager and an opening authority. We also show that a specialization of our model captures existing models for static and partially dynamic schemes. In the process, we identify a subtle gap in the security achieved by group signatures using revocation lists. We show that in such schemes new members achieve a slightly weaker notion of traceability. The flexibility of our security model allows to capture such relaxation of traceability.
A Universally Composable Framework for the Privacy of Email Ecosystems
Email communication is amongst the most prominent online activities, and as such, can put sensitive information at risk. It is thus of high importance that internet email applications are designed in a privacy-aware manner and analyzed under a rigorous threat model. The Snowden revelations (2013) suggest that such a model should feature a global adversary, in light of the observational tools available. Furthermore, the fact that protecting metadata can be of equal importance as protecting the communication context implies that end-to-end encryption may be necessary, but it is not sufficient.With this in mind, we utilize the Universal Composability framework [Canetti, 2001] to introduce an expressive cryptographic model for email “ecosystems” that can formally and precisely capture various well-known privacy notions (unobservability, anonymity, unlinkability, etc.), by parameterizing the amount of leakage an ideal-world adversary (simulator) obtains from the email functionality.Equipped with our framework, we present and analyze the security of two email constructions that follow different directions in terms of the efficiency vs. privacy tradeoff. The first one achieves optimal security (only the online/offline mode of the users is leaked), but it is mainly of theoretical interest; the second one is based on parallel mixing [Golle and Juels, 2004] and is more practical, while it achieves anonymity with respect to users that have similar amount of sending and receiving activity.